It rather amazes me the things I will come up with to procrastinate from writing. Tonight I came home and decided to be exceedingly domestic, whipping up two recipes I’ve never tried before. The first was a homemade broccoli soup – and it was so easy I’m not sure why I haven’t done it before. I don’t use my blender much (something about it screams ‘LOTS OF WASHING UP TO COME’), but in the end it was quick and delicious. My second recipe was my Herman the German cake (if you haven’t heard about one of these, check out the story behind it here), which was given to me by our digital marketeer at work. I made it with apple, cinnamon and chocolate chips. You know, because I can. It is also delicious, which is surprising because I had to keep it alive first, which was challenge enough!
At any rate, I am now sitting at my desk, cup of tea and slice of Herman cake close at hand, candle lit (I have to write in as close to near-darkness as possible – I know, you’re finding out too much about me now, aren’t you?), excuses put to the side. I’m in the middle of a secret WIP – although by writing this post, I’m kind of outing the secret! – that is distracting me while I wait for edits for The Oathbreaker’s Shadow. It’s a strange process, writing another book, because I don’t feel like I’ve been in this creative state for ages. For the past few years it’s all been about making Oathbreaker the best book it can be, and that means revising and rewriting – its own kind of creativity, sure, but not the putting-brand-new-words-on-a-blank-piece-of-paper kind. Not the rip-your-heart-out, destroy-your-writing-confidence, adrenaline-rush-of-new-ideas kind. It’s both scary and exhilarating. It makes me want to do anything to avoid it (see procrastination above), and it makes me feel sick with anticipation when I’m not doing it. It’s a creative Catch-22.
Today has been a strange day – it was meant to be quiet at work, but then the devastating news came through of Ray Bradbury’s passing. He was one of my great literary heroes, ever since reading Fahrenheit 451 blew my tiny mind in the eighth grade, and knowing he was part of the Voyager stable is part of what makes me feel so honoured and proud to work there. And so, I’m going to take advice today from him. One of the greats.
“Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.” (Ray Bradbury)
And try to not think I will, Mr Bradbury. Rest in Peace.